In 2016, Boston’s first-ever Small Business Plan recognized that support for minority, immigrant and women small business owners in Boston was a top priority, and in March 2017, the city’s new Business Capital and Finance Unit was established to help refocus small business lending to support these groups. Learn how these flexible loans are expected the help struggling small business owners in Boston to benefit, grow and thrive.
Boston’s New Business Capital and Financial Unit
The creation of the new finance unit and lending strategy stems from the 2016 Small Business Plan report, which showed that, despite a relatively healthy small business lending landscape, specific neighborhoods and demographics received significantly fewer loans. Still a very racially segregated city geographically, Boston noted that several southern neighborhoods were impacted, as well as East Boston and the West End, and it has promised to target these areas with the new financing program.
More Loans for Boston’s Minority-Owned Small Businesses
Since banks will typically not lend to a startup with less than two years of solid revenues or positive cash flow, the City of Boston will offer gap financing and micro loans. Funded by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Community Development Block Grants, these loans will be distributed to immigrant, women and minority-owned businesses, as well as industrial small businesses in the City of Boston.
The loans are to be used for rehabbing existing buildings, new construction and expansion, purchasing equipment, and startup costs. The expectation is that the loans will be repaid to the city by the small business refinancing with another lender, such as a bank or credit union, within a few years.
Are you a Boston Small Business Owner?
At The Lakeside Park, we take pride in helping small businesses and their owners to thrive and prosper in today’s competitive market. Check out our tips for small business owners for help with everything from which business networking groups you should join, to how to find cheap office space near Boston.